New moves to reduce youth suicide rates

The government's draft suicide prevention strategy is aiming to reduce suicide rates in Britain, it has been noted. Earl Howe, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in the Department of Health, explained proposed areas of action include lessening the risk of such behaviour in groups deemed high-risk, such as offenders and individuals with mental health problems.

Mr Howe was speaking in response to a parliamentary question put forward by the Lord Bishop of Bath and Wells, who enquired as to how many young people took their own lives in 2010 and 2011.

He gave the answer of 117 recorded deaths from suicide and verdicts of injuries of undetermined intent for youngsters between the ages of ten and 19 for 2010, while 467 instances were reported for 20 to 29-year-olds over the same timeframe.

While 2011's full figures are to be released later in 2012, the tallies over the first three quarters of the year for the age groups amounted to 108 and 467 respectively.

Mr Howe explained the government's strategy is looking to offer tailored approaches to benefit mental health in certain groups, while also attempting to limit access to suicide means and to offer higher levels of support to individuals affected when others decide to kill themselves.